Good footage of people creating the famous Wedgwood pottery at the Barlaston factories.
Titles read: 'ASSOCIATED BRITISH PATHE Present - The Making of Wedgwood'.
Reel 1. Pan across 1700s painting of canal and buildings of 'Etruria' - garden factory built by "that practical idealist - Josiah Wedgwood... born in 1730". Several scenic shots of countryside in Barlaston, Staffordshire, where the Wedgwood business is now located. A man climbs over a sty and walks beside the lake.
Steam train arrives at small rural station. Doors open before the train stops and crowds of men and women (workers) get out and walk along platform, past station sign reading 'Wedgwood'. Shots of the new Wedgwood factory buildings, with statue of Josiah holding a vase (?) in the grounds. Several shots of people at work in the factories; digging clay from big containers and putting it into vats. Using machinery to move ingredients from one place to another and mix them together. Ingredients are weighed as commentator explains the difference between china and earthenware. Pressed slabs of clay are put through a machine that squeezes it into cylindrical shapes.
In a showroom we see Chairman and Managing Director Josiah Wedgwood (descendent!) examining pieces of fine china with Victor Skellern, Head of Art Department, and Norman Wilson, Production Director. Artists at drawing boards, working on designs on paper and crockery. Modeller makes prototype urn in clay. Potter at work with clay on wheel. Veteran lathe used by a craftsman and woman wheel-turner. Ornamenter fixing handles to small vases. Woman worker presses clay into a mould and turns out figures used in the famous Wedgwood design 'The Dancing Hours'. A man puts them in position on a bowl. Man doing intricate work on traditional orange bowl.
Several shots show process in making dinner plates, cups and a Wedgwood Edme vase. Pottery is fired in the huge, electrically heated kilns, then glazed. Engravers at work. 'Napoleon Ivy' design is printed on a heated roller press and transferred to plate then painted over by hand. (Some of this footage is also found in CP 319 - Crockery Design.) 'Strawberry Hill' design is transferred to a plate. Woman who is Head of the Wedgwood School of Freehand Paintresses at work on 'Vine' design. Others at work on 'Ruby Tonquin' design, which, after several coatings of paint and powder, washings and firings, results in a red background with golden flowers. Continued in Reel 2.